Vienne (river)

river in France, tributary of the Loire

The Vienne (Occitan: Vinhana) is one of the most important rivers in southwestern France, a main left tributary of the lower Loire river. It supports numerous hydroelectric dams.

Vinhana  (Occitan)
Limoges bridge Saint Martial.JPG
The Vienne in Limoges
Vienne (rivière).png
Physical characteristics
 - locationPlateau de Millevaches
 - elevation880 m (2,890 ft)
 - locationLoire
 - coordinates47°12′45″N 0°4′31″E / 47.21250°N 0.07528°E / 47.21250; 0.07528 (Loire-Vienne)Coordinates: 47°12′45″N 0°4′31″E / 47.21250°N 0.07528°E / 47.21250; 0.07528 (Loire-Vienne)
Length363 km (226 mi)
Basin size21,105 km2 (8,149 sq mi)
 - average203 m3/s (7,200 cu ft/s)
Basin features
ProgressionLoireAtlantic Ocean

It flows through the Nouvelle-Aquitaine and Centre-Val de Loire regions, and two French départements are named after the Vienne: the Haute-Vienne (87) and the Vienne (86).


The Vienne river has a length of 363.2 km (226 mi) and a drainage basin with an area of approximately 21,161 km2 (8,170 sq mi).[1]


The Vienne river starts in the department of the Corrèze, at the foot of Mont Audouze, on the Plateau de Millevaches, in the commune of Millevaches, at an elevation of about 880 m (2,887 ft).[2]

It then flows roughly west to the city of Limoges where its water was used in the famous Limoges porcelain industry. A little way after Limoges it takes a turn to the north.

Finally, the river flows into the Loire river, on the left side, in the commune Candes-Saint-Martin.[3]

The Vienne flows through 6 departments and 96 communes, in 2 regions:[1]

The Vienne flows through three regional nature parks: Parc naturel régional de Millevaches en Limousin, Parc naturel régional Périgord Limousin and Parc naturel régional Loire-Anjou-Touraine.

Main tributariesEdit

The main tributaries of the Vienne river are:[1]


Its average yearly discharge (volume of water which passes through a section of the river per unit of time) is 193.0 m3/s (6,820 cu ft/s) at Nouâtre in the Indre-et-Loire department.[4]

Average monthly discharge (m3/s) at Nouâtre (1958 - 2017)[4]


Related pagesEdit


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 "La Vienne (L---0060)" (in French). SANDRE - Portail national d'accès aux référentiels sur l'eau. Retrieved 31 July 2016.
  2. "Source de la Vienne" (in French). Géoportail. Retrieved 31 July 2016.
  3. "Confluence de la Vienne" (in French). Géoportail. Retrieved 31 July 2016.
  4. 4.0 4.1 "La Vienne à Nouâtre" (in French). Banque Hydro. Archived from the original on 2 February 2019. Retrieved 2 December 2017.

Other websitesEdit